The merits of the dispute are thus within the exclusive
jurisdiction of an adjustment board under 45 U.S.C. § 153. See
Conrail, supra, 491 U.S. at 304, 109 S.Ct. at 2481. The court,
therefore, does not decide whether Metro-North's interpretation
of the contract is correct, only that it is "arguably justified,"
as that phrase is used in Conrail. See CSX Transp., Inc. v.
United Transp. Union, 879 F.2d 990, 1003 (2d Cir. 1989), cert.
denied, ___ U.S. ___, 110 S.Ct. 720, 107 L.Ed.2d 740 (1990).
The plaintiffs further argue that, even if the dispute is
minor, the court may enjoin Metro-North from implementing drug
testing pending arbitration. Ordinarily, a carrier in a "minor
dispute" may "act on its own interpretation [of the
collective-bargaining agreement] pending arbitration." CSX
Transp., supra, 879 F.2d at 997. An injunction pending
arbitration "is appropriate only in those instances when it
appears that its absence would prevent the Adjustment Board from
giving a significant remedy to the side that prevails before the
Board." Local 553, Transport Workers Union v. Eastern Air
Lines, 695 F.2d 668, 675 (2d Cir. 1982). The sole purpose of a
minor-dispute injunction is to preserve the jurisdiction of the
adjustment board. Westchester Lodge 2186, Bhd. of Ry. & S.S.
Clerks v. Railway Express Agency, Inc., 329 F.2d 748, 753 (2d
Cir. 1964). Neither party, however, has submitted the dispute to
arbitration, and the court has no power to grant injunctive
relief in a minor dispute unless the dispute is actually pending
before an adjustment board. Manion v. Kansas City Terminal Ry.,
353 U.S. 927, 927, 77 S.Ct. 706, 706, 1 L.Ed.2d 722 (1957) (per
curiam); Westchester Lodge 2186, supra, 329 F.2d at 753. If the
plaintiffs submit the dispute to the adjustment board within a
reasonable time, the court may entertain a renewed application
for an injunction, see id., although it is doubtful that
plaintiffs can satisfy the stringent prerequisites for a
minor-dispute injunction. See International Bhd. of Teamsters v.
Southwest Airlines Co., 875 F.2d 1129, 1136 (5th Cir. 1989) (en
banc) (drug-testing case does not meet prerequisites for
minor-dispute injunction); see also Brotherhood of Locomotive
Engineers v. Missouri-K.T.R.R., 363 U.S. 528, 534, 80 S.Ct.
1326, 1330, 4 L.Ed.2d 1379 (1960) (injunction permissible only if
board decision for union would be "an empty victory"); Local
553, supra, 695 F.2d at 675 (injunction permissible only if
board could give no "significant remedy" without it).
The plaintiffs offer no support for their contention that they
will suffer irreparable harm unless the court orders the
defendant to submit to arbitration. Despite their reference to
"the defendant's refusal to submit the claim to arbitration,"
Pl.Mem.Opp. at 10, the plaintiffs allege no facts that suggest
that a court order is necessary to secure Metro-North's
compliance with its statutory and contractual obligation to
submit to arbitration. The plaintiffs' request for costs and
attorneys' fees is also without merit.
In conclusion, changes in controlling decisional law have
undermined the basis of the injunction against the implementation
of Metro-North's drug-testing policy. The drug-testing policy now
presents a minor dispute within the meaning of the Railway Labor
Act. The dispute is thus within the exclusive jurisdiction of an
Accordingly, the injunction entered against Metro-North in this
case on August 16, 1988, is dissolved. The plaintiffs' requests
for an injunction compelling arbitration and restraining
implementation of the drug-testing policy pending arbitration,
and for costs and attorneys' fees, are denied.
IT IS SO ORDERED.